The innermost meaning of sacrifice is the annihilation of the finite just because it is finite. In order to demonstrate that this is the only purpose, the most noble and beautiful must be chosen; above all, man, the fulfillment of the earth. Human sacrifices are the most natural sacrifices. Man, however, is more than the fulfillment of the earth; he is reasonable, and reason is free and nothing but an eternal self-determination toward the infinite. Thus man can sacrifice only himself, and that is what he does in the omnipresent sanctissimum of which the masses are not aware. All artists are self-sacrificing human beings, and to become an artist is nothing but to devote oneself to the subterranean gods. The meaning of divine creation is primarily revealed in the enthusiasm of annihilation. Only in the throes of death is the spark of eternal life ignited.